Running a dishwasher, garbage disposal can be a real pain sometimes. If you have ever been annoyed by the sound of your dishwasher taking too long to fill, the loud sound of your disposer not working right or water backing up into your sink from a clog in the drain this article is for you. Here are a few tips to make your dishwasher, drain, disposal and work better.
Making Dishwasher, Drain, Disposal Work Better- The Tips
1. Use Cold Water
Using cold water instead of hot will save energy and won’t affect how clean your dishes get. If you have a newer model, it may have a sanitize cycle that uses hot water to achieve the best results for killing bacteria.
2. Use The Right Detergent
The type of detergent will affect how your dishes get cleaned. If you are not satisfied with the cleaning results then try another type or brand until you find one that works for your machine. Also, do not leave the cap off dishwasher detergent because it will start to clump and be hard to dissolve.
3. Don’t Pre-Rinse
Don’t rinse the dishes before you put them in your dishwasher. If there is lots of food on the dishes then it will be harder to clean and may clog your machine. It also wastes water because washing machines use less water than hand washing.
4. Clean Your Dishwasher
Check your dishwasher and make sure there is nothing blocking the spray arm, filter or any of the holes on the arms. Also clean out any food build up in the bottom of your dishwasher because it will affect how well it cleans. I like to use white vinegar and water but you can also buy a commercial cleaner at stores like Wal-Mart or other department stores.
5. Clean Your Garbage Disposal
Garbage disposals are used to get rid of small particles of food that can’t go in the garbage or into a garbage bag. If you have ever had the disposal plugged then you know what I’m talking about. To keep your disposal clean just put ice cubes down it every now and then. It may sound strange but the ice cubes will clean out any food particles that are stuck inside.
6. Run Cold Water While Using The Disposal
While you are using your disposal make sure to run cold water too because hot water will cause fat to congeal in the drainpipe which can eventually lead to a clog.
7. Frequently Clean Your Disposal Switch
The switch on your disposal for turning it on and off gets dirty over time. Every few months clean the switch because this can cause a humming or clicking noise when you try to turn it off. I like to use a small wire brush at first and then a squirt of WD-40 to clean the switch.
8. Use The Right Garbage Bag
Most garbage bags are not really made for kitchen trash cans because they can fall in when you take them out and end up spilling garbage all over the place. To avoid this problem try using 13-gallon size Glad or Hefty brand bags that fit tall kitchen trash cans better.
9. Check Drains Regularly
Check your drains often to make sure there is nothing blocking them like hair or food because if they get clogged the water won’t flow away and it could back up into your sink, dishwasher or even tub if it’s close enough. If you do find something stuck in one of your drains then use a plunger or snake to remove it.
10. Get Rid Of Mildew Smells
If your dishwasher has a mildew smell then soak some white vinegar in it overnight and run it through a cycle to clean the inside of the dishwasher. If you have an older model that doesn’t have any controls on the door then you can purchase an appliance cleaning tablet at most department stores or drugstores.
11. Clean Stains Around Faucets
Over time water stains build up around faucets because of the minerals in the water and to remove them use a pumice stone or you can also buy tile cleaner that is safe for dark colored tiles. Once you get the stains off then make sure to use a sealer or wax to prevent them from returning.
12. Don’t Use The Wrong Dish Soap
Dish soaps are made for different things like hand washing, dishwashers and general cleaning around the house. If you don’t use the right one for what you are trying to clean then you could damage the machine, dish or whatever it is you are trying to clean.
13. Don’t Forget To Check Water Temperature
Always check the water temperature before using your dishwasher because if it’s too hot then it can cause certain detergents or materials that the dishes are made from to dissolve and run into the food on the dishes. If the water is too cold then it won’t clean as well either so always use a dishwasher that can adjust the temperature on a knob inside the door.
14. Don’t Overload Your Dishwasher
It’s important not to overload your machine because if there isn’t enough room for the dishes to move around during the cycle, they won’t come out clean. It’s important to always set your dishwasher to its highest wash setting because the lower settings don’t use as much water inside.
15. Use Rinse Aid To Make Dishes Shine
If you want your dishes to really shine then use a rinse aid with each cycle because it will fill up the dispenser in the door and coat the dishes with a chemical that keeps water beaded up on them. It’s important not to forget this step because if you do your dishes will come out looking duller than they should.
16. Only Use Dishwasher Safe Dishes
It’s really important to always check your dishwasher manual to see what type of dishes and materials you can use in your machine. For example, you shouldn’t put stones or porcelain plates into a dishwasher because they may crack during the cycle. Also make sure to avoid putting in ceramic knickknacks, pots and pans made of cast iron, silverware with wood handles or anything that has copper because they are all materials that can get ruined in dishwasher cycles.
17. Use Dishwasher Tabs Or Powder
Most dishwashers today don’t use liquid when running a cycle because it can cause the chemicals to fizz and overflow out of the machine. Instead you should use dishwasher tablets or powder but just make sure to never put too many in because this could cause problems as well.
18. Improve Performance Of The Drain & Disposal System
Sometimes the drain and disposal system in your machine can become clogged with particles like food, toothpaste gel or hair but there are a few simple solutions you can try to make them work better again. You can run an empty cycle then pour a cup of vinegar or a mixture of baking soda and water down the drain to clean it out.
19. Make Sure To Replace Old Disposal, Drain Filters
It’s important to replace these filters regularly because they can really slow drainage down and you want to make sure that if a foreign object gets stuck in there then your disposal will be able to break it down. You can find most of these filters in the door or inside the disposal unit itself and they are inexpensive replacements that you should always keep on hand.
Tips To Make Dishwasher, Drain, Disposal Work Better- The Cautions
1. Always Unplug It Before You Work On It
You should always unplug your dishwasher before you ever work on it because if there is power running to the unit then this could cause serious injury. Also, be sure to unplug any electrical cords at the bottom of the machine that connect into the drain and disposal system as well just in case they are still plugged in.
2. Always Take The Food Disposer Apart Before You Clean It
You should always take the food disposer apart before you are going to clean it because this will make it easier to put back together again after you are finished scrubbing all of the parts clean. Also, if there is any debris stuck inside then this will make it easier to get it out before you reassemble the unit.
3. Always Keep Your Disposer And Dishwasher Drain Clear Of Debris
You should always keep your food disposer and dishwasher drain clear of any debris because this is one of the most common causes of clogging in these units. You can do this by regularly brushing the drain with a plunger to break up any chunks that may be stuck together, or you can use a snake-like tool if it gets clogged very bad. Also try to keep the dishwasher clear of too much gunk because this will cause your dishes not to come out clean every time.
4. Always Use The Right Detergent
It’s really important to always use the right type of detergent when you are washing dishes by hand or in a dishwasher because this will either clean your dishes properly or leave them dirty and covered with filth. For example, dishwashing liquid isn’t very good at getting rid of stuck-on food particles that may be stuck inside your machine, but dishwasher tablets do a much better job at breaking up the gunk.
5. Always Be Careful When Working On The Dishwasher
You should always be careful when working on any type of dishwasher because they can really injure you if not handled properly. For example, you should never put your hand into the drain or disposal unit because this can cut you and cause a lot of damage to your body. Also, if the control panel is loose on the machine, then you should staple it back together as soon as possible before water starts leaking through and causing serious damage elsewhere on your appliance.
As you can see, there are many things that you can do to make your dishwasher, drain, disposal work better. These simple tips will help you avoid the need for appliance repairs on your unit and keep your kitchen arena clean & tidy.
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